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If I were a panda, I would be terribly interested.

Published January 6, 2019 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

As I have mentioned, I get my news from a variety of sources. Sometimes I just can’t stand CNN and Huffiington Post anymore (Nothing against those sites, it’s just I feel like I’m trapped in the words episode of Black Mirror and I’m supposed to stay calm.)  So when I just can’t take it anymore (Day 14 of shutdown, anyone?) I go to either Bored Panda or Buzzfeed.

I kind of like the idea that a bunch of panda’s sat around trying to figure out what to do with their free time. (I’m assuming this is after they have finsished their meal prep. Seriously, if all they eat is bamboo, why are they so girthy? I don’t have anything against girthy, but if I am going eat salad all day and stay chunky, I would rather have the fun of cookies.)

So the Bored Panda Board generally has a good balance of truly intersting, wow, I didn’t know that, and how dumb are people? That’s enough to keep me fairly entertained so I don’t want to poke my own eye out so I don’t have to go back to work on Monday.

I think every teacher everywhere is feeling the same way. Now, I truly love my job and genuinely cherish my students.  I’m getting a new student and there’s still a lot of balance that is needed after the addition of the last new student, but I digress (Quelle Surprise!).

Right now, I’m avoiding working on the last article I’m working.  It’s kind of like avoiding homework, except someone is paying me.  I do realize that it’s kind of pointless to avoid writing by writing. It’s nuts.   But then again so am I. Not sure about the pandas.

 

The road, it goes on.

Published January 4, 2019 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

I’m not even going to pretend I know what that title means.  Creating a title has always been my weakest skill as a writer. (I know, you would think it’s parentheticals and run on sentences. Who knew?)

So here we are on the fourth day of the New Year. I’m a little out of it because I’ve had the last two weeks off of work and I kind of don’t really know what’s going on.  I haven’t been as vigilant with the news as I usually am. Seriously, I start every morning with a quick glance at CNN so I know what shoes to put on mainly because I am responsible for the safety of 11 children and if armegeddon is nigh, I definitely want to be ready. ( To be fair, I am almost always ready. )

I am planning to go have lunch with The Mom. She warned me that a sinkhole has opened up near the restaurant where we are planning to have lunch.  Now I think that is a pretty specific sign that maybe we should go somewhere else.

I’m a little amazed that I had no idea that this was happening. An actual sinkhole, on one of the most traveled paths in my city.  It’s insane.

Speaking of insane, this government shutdown is still going on. I have had several people tell me that this really doesn’t affect me and and that I should calm down already.  ( I get that a lot.)

My father was a govenment employee and I know that any pause in our finances would have been difficult. We wouldn’t have had a complete collapse, but it would have been challenging.

There are many people who are on a very tenuous hold, financially and they can’t, just can’t afford to miss a planned cash flow.  Here’s how this affects me:

I am not in close contact with someone dependent on government paychecks.  But if one person runs out of money, it affects all of us. Even beyond money, a tantrum thrown by a grown man is causing the loss of hope and money to people who have chosen to work for our country. This has got to be soul scarring.

What is going to happen when/ if this tantrum ends?  We are going to have a group of angry, psychologically dented broke workers.

And that affects all of us.

 

Three days in

Published January 3, 2019 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

I’ve been meaning to write for several days now, but my first world problems got in the way. WordPress would not let me post anything and instead of writing my thoughts in a document, I just slugged about.

I’m trying to cram in the last few moments, hours etc of low tension relaxing.  I have to go back to school on Monday. The kids come back on Tuesday.  BatBeard won’t be here until maybe Monday night.  I am thrilled about this.

I knew what I was getting into when I fell in love with an actor. I know that Christmas is the only time of the year where actors can consistently work.  I know that. I also know that this is the beginning of the third year of coming in a distant second to a pirate ship.

I know, I know, holidays are rough.  My holidays were a bit easier becasue I finally escaped the money pit and am now in my quaint little apartment.  But, the holiday was a bit harder because I didn’t go visit Batbeard so I didn’t have my sweetheart for Christmas or New Years. There .I’m done complaining.

We have many challenges ahead. I mean all of the we’s. We, the country, we the teachers, we the mothers, sisters, daughters,etc.  These challenges include the usual first of the year challenges, weight loss, drinking more water, working out, reading more, being kinder, being more productive. Some of us are even going to jump on the “Let’s do all of the above” bandwagon.  So what will, I, WriterChick be doing this new year?

I am going to focus on being healthier- I will be 50 this year

I am going to focus on being patient-I have four incredibly challenging students and I get another one on Tuesday

I am going to focus on getting stronger- Everyday I truly believe we getting closer to Armegeddon. I know I have been saying this sine 1992, but it’s still true

I am going to focus on letting go of the things I can’t change-Seeing BatBeard whenever I want. He is an actor and he is happiest when he is performing. My brothers rampant alcholism. He is no longer the brother I grew up with and he will not quit drinking until he is forced to.  I have chronic insomnia and the only way to deal with this is to keep regular hours.

I have accomplished many things. I get to celebrate them. Being proud doesn’t equal pompous.

I don’t have to do everything today.  It’s okay to stop because you are tired.

 

Happy New year people

 

Write where we are

Published November 22, 2018 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

As I have mentioned  a number of times, much of my education took place in Catholic Schools.  (Three actually) Now I am back on the Mother Ship, teaching et, al. basically living the dream.   I do have flashbacks.  In the lexicon of Catholic Education,the students who attend Catholic School have their Religious education needs met during the school day.  The children who attend public schools go to CCD. Not real sure if that’s what it’s still called.  These kids were taught in a less rigid, more folksy-summer-camp environment.

While we had to sing songs like “Lo’how rose ere blooming” ( I swear that song has about thirty verses.) and “Bloom where you’re planted” (I don’t even want to get into the problems I have with that song. Suffice it to say that  The Mom, she with her MRE and me, with my M.Ed and MA. had a conversation that ended with an agreeing to disagree.)

Meanwhile the CCD kids got to sing the rousing song”Thank you Lord for giving us life. Right where we are” by Diane Davis. That song is so rousing and catchy that I remember it after only hearing it once, forty years ago.

I’ve been thinking about that song a lot lately. Not just because I’m in a whirlwind of activity, but also because I am reminding me to be grateful

As for the above mentioned whirlwind:

I have this week, and this week alone, to finish moving out of the house where I have lived for 13 years. This house was selected by the Adulteress when she and EH were first a couple.  I lived here when I was recovering from that time my head blew up, because EH and I WERE STILL MARRIED. I don’t know why the rest of the world seemed to think it was acceptable that she still live here while I was trying to grow a new brain.

Here’s something I’ve never told anyone. (I know, so why not share it with the folk who don’t know me.) When I had finished my recovery and was ready to be released back into the wild, I decided to go back to Farmington and deal with all of the things I left behind there.  I did not stay because EH wouldn’t tell the Adulteress to get out.  So I went back to the desert to figure the rest of it out.

Now if I hadn’t gone back to F-town, I wouldn’t ever have met Actor Boy.   I can’t imagine a life without knowing him.

I really could have done without the heartbreak and angst and everything that followed, but here we are.  So I’m emptying the house (hard to do) And moving into an apartment. That’s actually pretty easy to do.  The hard stuff still has to be faced. My Amanda Friend has made suggestions that make sense. I’m trying to follow that.

I haven’t looked in the box of wedding pictures. I’m not going to have room for the piano. I don’t know what I’m going to do about that.  I’m looking for the box that has my Nativity set and my Christmas stocking in it.   The Mom made the stocking for me when I was a tiny child.

What I truly do not want to face is the eventuality that these parts of my past are gone. Just gone. I know they’re just things, but come on, I got rid of all of the pickled corn, I’ve dealt with the murky pool in the backyard. I said good-bye to Mr. Steve and sat in with his corpse until the funeral home decided to drive the half mile to come get him (I realize that Steve would have been perfectly ok with me wheeling him in his hospital bed down the frontage road to the home. It’s probably better that I didn’t.)  I have lived the last two years of my life without the love thereof because BatBeard’s work takes him elsewhere.

I live with thin layer of panic brewing because the country is being run by an orange madman. I work 10 hour days with very little resources and ever increasing demands.

I shouldn’t have to harness my rage to get over something I’m sure is already gone.

So am I grateful that I grew enough of my brain back to give me the wisdom to know the difference right where we are.

 

It’s a process. (Maybe I should take it out of the box)

Published November 5, 2018 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

In the so-long-ago-it-seems-like-it-happened-to-someone-else, I made a stand and withdrew from the MA program at Texas Women’s University. I was young and had hope and a purpose so I picked a side, Process based evaluation vs. Product based evaluation.

It seems such a senseless argument, particularly for Theater program, but I firmly believe that there are some prices too high to pay for a performance and that, to some performers, the process is the goal.  If only I remembered that a scant nine years later when my brain exploded because I was trying to have the perfect body while being the perfect performer, but I digress.

Still and all, I’m where I have chosen to be career-wise, such as it is and overall, I think I made the right choice, as when push comes to shove, I want to go out knowing that I fought the good fight and did the best that I could.

That being said, I’m tired of waking up scared.

Not scared in that there are zombies trying to munch on my tenderized brain as I flee, a flurry of post-it notes in my wake.

No, I’m talking real fear.  The fear that comes from knowing you are doing your best and still watching yourself drown.

The house has sold. (Whee!) Now I have about 30 days to get everything out/sold/trashed and find somewhere new to live.  I’ve started sifting through the detritus of a dissoled marriage and stuff Steve left behind. There are  a few things that Actor Boy left when he went to college. There’s not a few things of BatBeard’s that I need to relocate.

And then there’s my stuff. I know it’s just stuff.  But it’s not just stuff.

It’s the piano, that I fondly refer to as August Wilson. My grandfather bought it for my mother when she was learning to play the piano. It was convereted from a player piano so it can’t be retuned; it needs to be restrung.

It’s books.  My favorites and a few that were gifts. It’s the book that is a compilation of Bob Dylan’s lyrics; the songs that got me through the days of madness as my parent’s marriage dissolved and I tried to finish college

It’s the drafting table. The last vestige of Fort Worth Theater. Steve Garrett rescued it from the rubble and it’s mine.

It’s the pictures. The oil painting that Steve had in his living room and the framed Georgia O’Keeve print that my mother had framed for my ex-husband.  It’s the pictures that have to be gone through, all of the wedding pictures that need to be stored or discarded because the frames might mean something to someone else.

Yes, it is all stuff, and I do have to process all of it. Very soon.

Because in all of the stuff, there’s the memories. There’s the TEN, 10, ten mason jars of pickled corn that my Esther Hembree put up for my ex, back in the days when there was a Homefort in Tracy City.

I have the jars and I am more than a little resentful that I have custody of the corn and the jars and I have to move and find a place for a piano because someone else screwed up. (Or down, you remember, girl with the little rat face and teeth that make an x in front.)

And then there’s the fear that it’s all ending anyway, so who cares?

Because, as you know, in the litany of choices I made, the biggest one involved me promising to keep my students safe.

We are in a world where that is becoming exponentially harder as hate spews from the mouths of those who have more guns, more money and more voice than the rest of us.

I know I have plenty to do without worrying about this, too, but I do.

It’s part of the process.

My mission, should I choose to accept it.

Published October 6, 2018 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

This was a challenging week and the fact that a bunch of politicians just told all of the women in this country that there is no punishment for hysterical, unstable men is just the cherry on the cake.

I have a headache. This isn’t news nor is the fact that everytime I have a headache I have to ask myself a series of questions to ascertain what kind of headache it is and if I will soon lapse into less than sentient state.

I had a headache yesterday; I left school early. School has been such a struggle for me this week that I am seriously wondering if I can do what is asked of me.

The group of students I have this year are the first generation of children who have never known life without a touch screen. It’s interesting and there are portions of my day that I can only cope by pretending that I am an anthropolgist studying a new tribe of cheeto eating beasts with short attention spans.

Week before last I got to the point where I can anticipate the bumps in my particular educational road and veer around and keep everything on the rails.

Then last week happened and I am faced with a challenge that I don’t know if I can handle.  The challenge is something that originally made me feel bitter and resentful and now I’m just sad.  I can’t get into it too specifically right now, but I was feeling so  much better when I saw my summative evaluation from last year: Could benefit from better organization, but students feel safe and happy in this learning environment.

I don’t feel like I’m capable right now.  Yesterday  we were working on a project designing a t-shirt for a person or organization that works for the greater good- One of my students wrote this on the example I had projected on the screen43154605_10217570015311291_4390089667576332288_n

I was touched, especially since this was created by two incredibly disruptive students.

I’m trying kids, I’m trying.

 

I think I may have just made that up

Published September 23, 2018 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

I was talking to my Amanda Friend and Angry Old Guy, when I realized I may have made a word up that sounded  perfectly cromulent in context.

I was in mid-rant about the many, many things I am unprepared for that I have to face in the coming week, and I mentioned that I had enraged the Mom because I suggested that having a biopsy may be preferable to the conferences and in-services I have to attend this week.

I said, “I’m not being hyperbolic; I really feel that way.” By vocally providing punctuation, a correctly used semi-colon, I endorsed the usage of that word.

(BTW, the word does, indeed, exist. It is not, however, connected to linguistics; instead it pertains to mathematics. )

It’s amazing how a cleverly delivered phrase presented by someone who has a history of knowing what they are talking about can convince learned people that such a reality, etomologically speaking, exists.  (Boy, I just used a lot of big words. I am so SMRT.)

That was an awful long way to go to intro my current state of angst and panic (attorneys at law) It is my sincere belief that we as a people and community and republic, cluster, group, coven, family, tribe, club, etc are in a constant state of bewilderment because of the level and quality of input streaming into our collective consciousness.

This isn’t news or even a clever observation. It just is the way things are.

I have been reading some cleverly and thoughtfully worded essays on Medium.  Some of these essays are repostings by journalists and writers who have already published on other platforms.  (You should check out the sight, there are some cool things there.)

Most of what I have gleaned simply sharpens the fine point of what I am already thinking.

We are in trouble.

All of us.

No matter how you feel about immigration and politics, if you endorse mainstreaming the  traumatization of children you are part of the problem.  And the more you deny it, the bigger the problem grows.

People have stopped caring about each other.

I’m not sure why.  But we don’t have time to figure out the what and how.  We need to focus on the fix it now part.